Any Good SEO Company Out There?

Any Good SEO Company Out There?

The Truth About Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most important, yet misunderstood aspects of website marketing. In essence, the concept of SEO is simple. By providing the most relevant website or web page to a given search string, Google, Yahoo! and other search engines will place a given website at the top of the returned web results.

So far, no great secret, but the issue of how search engines make that determination that is the root of great controversy and debate. And, scores of “search engine optimizers” stand at the ready, eager to sort it all out for any website owner with a credit card. The question remains: Is there any good SEO company out there?

Obviously, the answer is yes, but what business owner has the desire, let alone resources to hire 50 SEOs before finding one that achieves a profitable outcome? Yet, there are SEOs on every street corner, so how does a business owner get his or her website to the top of the search engine rankings without being taken to the cleaners?

The Problem with SEO Firms

To begin with, any chump with a computer can call himself an SEO or Search Engine Marketer. There is no grand SEO council deciding who will and will not be granted the authority to charge significant sums of money with the hope of pushing websites to those coveted top rankings. Not that regulation is any great solution, but there are abundant practices in use by some pretty big SEO firms that are outdated, unethical, don’t work and can actually do the website harm. And, many of these can result in the site’s removal from search engines altogether.

Without getting into link exchanges, paid directory submissions and all the other stuff that SEOs propagate with the full knowledge that they are ineffective; the entire practice of SEO as a business model runs in direct contrast to the goals of the businesses who use the service.

Search Engine Rankings is Not ROI

Business owners expect a return on their investments. SEO firms charge big bucks for a service that may or may not produce a result. This is true for other forms of marketing as well. However, no radio or TV station requires that advertisers sign onto a year long (or more) contract in which the station automatically charges the client’s credit card every month, and that makes no requirement of producing a positive result. Yet, that IS the state of the search engine optimization business.

(Most) SEOs Lack Understanding of General Business

SEO is marketing. Business owners view SEO in the same light as other promotional opportunities. They know that their websites must be seen to be effective, yet lack the background and knowledge to know what steps to take to achieve that result. SEOs, by extension, rarely have any understanding of their client’s industry, and therefore rely on the client for all of the information necessary to reach his or her clients. In short, SEO means pushing selected keywords and key phrases to the top. Nothing else.

The SEO might see results for the selected keywords, and gets paid whether anyone buys anything or not. It is our belief that SEOs should be able to assist in ensuring the success of the campaign (RIO), not just pushing keywords up the ladder.

iPutty is Different from Other SEO Firms

First, iPutty does not require monthly contracts. That is not to say that a business should expect instant results. Depending on how competitive the keywords, the time it takes to achieve top search engine rankings can vary from weeks to many months, sometimes more. The truth is, once that result has been achieved, maintaining that position is usually a whole lot less time consuming than getting there in the first place. What SEOs won’t tell you is that most of the heavy lifting is done in the first few months. After that, the site owner pays simply because of the contract.

Yes, There IS a Good SEO Company Out There

iPutty. Honest search engine results without the high cost and mystery of a typical SEO. And, we can help your business grow in other ways too. Give us a call to learn how we will get your business the exposure it deserves for a fraction of what you’d expect to pay. iPutty, Search Engine Marketing the way business owners like it to be. 775.324.1644

Marketing With Blogs

Custom Blog Design & Development

Marketing your business on the Internet: Blogging for dollars

What is a blog?

A blog, short for “web log” is a simply website that has been formatted in such a way as to simplify the posting of articles, long or short, formal or informal, and which generally allows for comment streams to be added by visitors to the site. In addition, photos and other web content may be easily included in blog posts or pages, with capabilities and design options for blogs expanding all the time.

Why your business needs a blog.

Your business needs a blog for several reasons. Your customers and clients, like ours, come to you because you are the expert in your field. They turn to you for direction and a larger understanding of how your business will make their lives easier, or more entertaining, safer, whatever. Almost always, business websites (you do have a business website by now, right?) focus on the business, when in reality, they should be addressing the needs and desires of the potential client or customer. It is often said among sales professionals that customers appreciate features but they buy benefits.

A blog provides an opportunity, or forum for you to build a relationship with your customers in a human, non-salesy way. Beyond relationship building, blogs are consistently high performers in search engines. Popular blog engines like WordPress have thousands of available plugins for features like e-commerce, image galleries, video, contact forms and just about anything you might dream of. They also are an ideal hub for all of your social media. And, the development costs are minimal.

Custom Blog Development

In general, we approach blog development in one of two ways; either as a branded version of a standard install, or a completely custom, purpose-built blog site. We sometimes develop blogs completely from scratch, but more often use one of the popular platforms like Drupal, Joomla or WordPress. Most commonly, we use WordPress because it is a consistant top performer in search engines. Also, the architecture is completely open, allowing for total customization, and it has a large, global developer network.

Blog Hosting

You can get a blog free from blogspot.com or wordpress.com, but for a business website, it should be hosted independently.

Free blogs are better than no blog, but hosting and setup are so innexpensive that, for business, independent hosting is a much more powerful option. By hosting your blog at iPutty, we have limitless options for programming both the site and the server. The result is that we’ve acheived virtually real-time inclusion into Google’s index. That means that any post you make can be at the top of Google searches within minutes!

Also, hosting your blog internally means that your business won’t be subject changes in terms or policies. It happens. We had a client come to us recently that used a fairly well known company for sending out free email campaigns. Everything from their list, templates, user statistics, etc. were out there sitting on this company’s servers. Then one day, poof! Gone. No warning; not about about what happened; no phone; no anything. Sadly, we couldn’t help them. It’s the same for you blog. If it’s important, keep ownership of it. You’ll thank us later.

See blogging in action. Give us 30 minutes and we’ll change your entire wiew of what marketing on the web is all about.

We’ve been working with blogging as a major component of our client’s online marketing mix for a long time. We’d like to show you how your business blog can act as a powerful hub for all of your marketing efforts, not just on the web. Our techniques and programs work to drive new clients and customers to your business, so don’t hesitate. We’ll look forward to meeting you in person.

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